Gov. DeSantis promises to abide by two-dose guideline for COVID-19 vaccine

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Gov. Ron DeSantis has reaffirmed the state’s commitment to administering both of the recommended two doses of the Pfizer and Moderna coronavirus vaccines.

In a written statement issued by his office Thursday, the governor reemphasized what he’s been saying during news conferences this week:

“While there is talk at the federal level regarding how to distribute vaccine doses and whether booster shots should be ‘held back,’ Florida is committed to the two-dose regimen for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines,” DeSantis said.

“One dose seems to provide some protection, but the 95 percent efficiency has only been shown to be attained by taking the booster shot. This means that while the manner of distribution may change, the necessity of the booster shot will not. Florida wants all seniors to receive booster shots at the appropriate time.”

In December, the governor appeared to suggest the state might emphasize administering the initial dose, citing a Wall Street Journal op-ed touting the efficacy of that approach, as the News Service of Florida reported at the time.

Federal authorities have been holding back booster doses until it’s time to administer them to people who’d received the first shot. DeSantis has been urging the feds to go ahead and deliver then, so the state can provide first doses to more more elderly people, who have priority now.

“My sense is that, because we’re going to continue to get more [doses], you can always decide later on to dial back in certain areas if you need more booster shots. Right now, we’ve got intense demand for this and we want to be able to get it for senior citizens,” he said during a news conference Wednesday in Naples.

Michael Moline
Michael Moline has covered politics and the legal system for more than 30 years. He is a former managing editor of the San Francisco Daily Journal and former assistant managing editor of The National Law Journal. He began his career covering the Florida Capitol for United Press International. More recently, he wrote for Florida Politics.